National Lottery gives £3.7million to domestic violence victims


Grants given by the National Lottery will help out hundreds of domestic violence victims who have struggled through hard times.

Over £3.7m in grant money from the National Lottery Community Fund has been shared between 116 charity and community projects across Northern Ireland. The funds will tackle issues affecting communities across Northern Ireland such as domestic violence and isolation.

Furthermore, children, who are forced to flee homes because of domestic violence, are among those who will benefit.

A few charities who have received a grant include:

  • Belfast and Lisburn Women’s Aid – £9,600 to provide “buddy back packs” for children.
  • Fermanagh Women’s Aid – £500,000 to help abuse victims get back on their feet.
  • Mid Ulster Women’s Aid – £8,000 grant to refurbish their facility.
  • Fermanagh Women’s Aid – £498,237 grant to fund its Safety and Wellbeing Support project over the next four years.

The grant allowed children to feel at home as soon as possible

Noelle Collins, from Belfast and Lisburn Women’s Aid, said:

“When children come to the refuge it is new and scary for them, and it’s really important that they start to feel like it’s home as soon as possible,”

She also though the ‘buddy back pack’ was a brilliant idea since it gave the children something that was theirs after most of them had to leave their belongings behind.

“We try and include things that will help them settle in, such as comfy PJs and some cuddly toys and a tooth brush.

“They can also use the bag as a school bag.”

Belfast and Lisburn Women’s Aid fill up 106 beds in their three refuges every night.

The money will provide safety and wellbeing support to victims

In 2018/19, over 400 children and 600 women stayed in Women’s Aid refuges across Northern Ireland.

All 116 grants range widely in value. The largest sum of £500,000 given to the Children’s Law Centre. The smallest award of £1,920 was given to the Whitecity Community Development Association in Belfast.

The list of recipients is huge, including youth clubs; senior citizens’ organisations; community groups; sports grounds; interface projects; GAA clubs; Orange Halls and an Irish language group.

Additionally, some organisations run projects that aim to improve mental health, tackle loneliness and reduce social isolation.

They have even been able to provide surf therapy!

Furthermore, £200,000 has been allocated to the Wave Project. This is a UK-wide organisation which provides “surf therapy” for children and young people who are vulnerable, isolated or struggling with mental health issues.

Over the next four years, a total of 240 young people will learn to surf off the coast of Portrush. They will also be given the chance to become surf mentors.

Kate Beggs from the National Lottery Community Fund also said:

“Whether it’s small pots of funding or larger grants, people are being brought together to make good things happen and change lives.”

Play the National lottery, and other lottery games, at OneLotto today! You could contribute to helping vulnerable people.

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